Olympic Champion Dick Fosbury delivers grand prize to PE class
Oct. 6, 2016
On Friday, Sept. 30, track legend Dick Fosbury helped IHT celebrate an innovative group of physical education students at Bay View Middle School by delivering the grand prize from the IHT Spirit Video Challenge powered by adidas.
Fosbury delivered a classroom set of new adidas ZONE for IHT Spirit wrist heart rate monitors to Bay View teacher Kaitlyn Bloemer. He then participated in PE classes after speaking to the entire school during a pep rally Friday morning. Watch a video recap of the pep rally and visit here.
“It’s always very special to have an Olympic Gold Medalist, and one who’s so well-known that he’s left his legacy in his sport, [speak to our students],” said Bay View Principal Steve Meyers.
‘I have to do something different’
“When they raised the bar to 5 feet, 6 inches, I had never made that height before,” said Fosbury as he shared the story of how he developed the jumping style that now bears his name. “I thought, ‘I have to do something different.’”
To reach new heights, Fosbury used his engineering skills to innovate a new method for his jumps. The jump is officially named the “Fosbury Flop” after Fosbury cleared the bar by jumping back-first and flopping over the bar.
Fosbury used the skills that later led him to a career in engineering to develop a different style, one in which he jumped back-first and flopped over the bar. It worked, and the Fosbury Flop was born.
Like Fosbury’s flop, the Zone monitors represent our latest innovation to improve physical education. The wrist-based heart rate monitor allows students to see how hard they are exercising. The monitors change color based on the student’s heart rate zone, helping them understand what vigorous exercise feels like.
The monitors bring heart rate monitor technology to PE. IHT’s Spirit System collects data from the Zone monitors to generate a visualization of each student’s individual workout session. The Spirit System allows teachers to assess PE performance, track success and measure achievement aligned with nationally defined standards.
“As we’ve integrated technology into math and social studies and other subject areas, [more people are understanding] the prominent place that it can play in our physical education programs,” said Meyers.
Fosbury emphasized the importance of using technology to accumulate data in physical education.
“What’s really important today that I’ve learned is that it is critically important to have data to be able to monitor where your progress is,” he said.
In conjunction with the Zone’s release, IHT and adidas conducted a Spirit Video Challenge last spring. Students and teachers submitted videos demonstrating how they raised the bar in their physical education classes. The grand prize included a classroom set of the new monitors in addition to three years of the IHT Spirit System software. The 60 videos entered in the contest generated 29,000 votes. And can we mention that the videos gained 63,000 plays as well? Bay View’s winning video had more than 4,000 views.
“Today was an awesome experience for our students to hear an incredible story,” said Damian LaCroix, the superintendent of schools at the Howard-Suamico School District. “It’s a story not only of athletic accomplishment but also the importance of academic accomplishment.
“I loved mathematics and I loved science,” Fosbury told the students. “I had to work at that.”
Congratulations Bay View. Thank you for raising the bar in PE.